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Senate and House Judiciary Committees Drill Oil Execs

The price of oil sky rocketed today and hit another all time high of $135 a barrel. And what are our wise and fearless leaders doing to reverse this trend? For one, the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee bravely hauled the executives of America's oil companies in front of them to explain their record profits. As they did this, the leaders of the OPEC nations laughed their way to the bank because of the US government's utter stupidity. The Democrats and some Republicans have refused to allow us to drill for our own oil in our own country, whether in ANWR, off the gulf coast or anywhere else for that matter, forcing us to rely on oil from other nations. By putting us into the situation where we have to buy oil, the one product that is central to the stability of American economy, from other, in some cases hostile, nations instead of drill for it ourselves, the Dems have handed the leaders of these nations the ability to directly manipulate the American economy. We're talking about Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran, Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, Mohammar Quadarfi of Libya as well as others. There isn't another scenario much more nightmarish than that.

Well, perhaps there is. According to Business and Media Institute, a guest on CNBC predicted gasoline would eventually hit $12 a gallon:

"[T]he prices that we're paying at the pump today are, I think, going to be 'the good old days,' because others who watch this very closely forecast that we're going to be hitting $12 and $15 per gallon," Hirsch said. "And then, after that, when oil - world oil production goes into decline, we're going to talk about rationing. In other words, not only are we going to be paying high prices and have considerable economic problems, but in addition to that, we're not going to be able to get the fuel when we want it."

Hirsch told the Business & Media Institute the $12-$15 a gallon wasn't his prediction, but that he was citing Charles T. Maxwell, described as the "Dean of Oil Analysts" and the senior energy analyst at Weeden & Co. Still, Hirsch admitted the high price was inevitable in his view.

I would love to dismiss his claim as crazy, but a few years ago, when people were predicting oil would reach $100 a barrel, I thought that was completely crazy. Today, we're heading for $150 a barrel of oil.

My hope that the price of oil would eventually fall again (I'd be happy with $3.50 a gallon) was squashed today after watching Congresswoman Maxine Waters threaten to nationalize America's oil companies. Yes, she actually said that. Watch her in all her ignorance at Hot Air.

Update: Watch Ms. Waters announce to the world that she would take over US oil companies:

Now, if the US government and the Democrats like Ms. Waters were truly interested in erasing the oil companies' record profits and helping the American consumers, then they would be doing everything they could to increase oil and gasoline production so as to saturate the market. The price of oil and gasoline would then drop through the floor. Remember when oil was $8 a barrel and gasoline was a mere $.95? Oil companies were merging left and right because they couldn't stay in business on their own and the price of gas wasn't on the American people's radar. If punishing the oil companies is truly what Democrats like Maxine Waters really want to do, then they would glut the market. They would change the law so that the supply of oil and gasoline vastly outpaced demand and oil and gas prices dropped.

But they won't do that because they don't care about the American consumers. They don't want the American people using more oil or gasoline. They want the American people to hurt at the pump so they don't drive as much. Why? Because Democrats actually think the American people are the problem in all of this to begin with.


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Comments (35)

Congresswoman Maxine Wat... (Below threshold)

Congresswoman Maxine Waters threaten to nationalize America's oil companies. Yes, she actually said that.

This is a GREAT idea. We can't allow the "free" market this much control over our national security.

I hope you are joking, Stev... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

I hope you are joking, Steve, as I'd hate for you to be as ignorant as Maxine Waters.

In 1965 Gas was as cheap as... (Below threshold)

In 1965 Gas was as cheap as .19 cents a gallon.

"Democrats actually think the America people are the problem in all of this to begin with."

That's part of it but it goes far beyond that.

Many Americans really do think this country would be better off as a fully socialistic society with ALL business fully nationalized and society communist in all but name.

Why do they think this way?

In a nutshell, abandonment of traditional faith. More specifically, with that abandonment, a lack of a plausible explanation for life's unfairness.

All the major religions provide an explanation that allows for adherents to function in a universe that allows bad things to happen to good people.

But secularism, new age religions, individual 'spirituality', agnosticism and atheism provide no solace nor answer to the essential truth that life contains unfairness for all, in one degree/way or another.

Left with no answer, their reaction is, as always one of 'fight or flight'. If flight, despair and the escape of their drug of choice await. If fight, then the reaction to this 'unfairness' is to try to control it, to make life be fair.

This explains the philosophical basis of all thier positions on abortion, embryo stem cell research, cloning, etc., etc.

With no conventional belief in a soul nor frequently in an afterlife either only the outer reality of their experience is left.

The more extreme the allegiance to secularism and atheistic tendencies the more likely the rage against life's unfairness and the greater the belief that if only enough factors (people, economic and governmental systems, education, etc.) can be controlled, life can be made fair enough.

Maxine Waters is just one example of those who out of ignorance and 'faith' in the 'agenda' are pushing for its implementation.

They have exchanged traditional faith for the faith that thier pet 'isms' can be achieved through enough control.

Men need to believe in something and nature does not tolerate a vacumn.

Ironically, the Maxine Waters of the world don't see that the very things they cherish most about this country would be destroyed if they actually achieved their goals.

Wow, this is one of the nut... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Wow, this is one of the nuttiest posts we've seen in a while. First off, let's blame the Dems for not drilling ANWR, when the Reps controlled both houses of Congress for six years and did nothing about it.

Next, your "hope that the price of oil would eventually fall again was squashed" by some stupid thing some stupid Congresswoman said that is completely meaningless. Meanwhile, an event here in REALITY--Bush going to Saudi Arabia on bended knee and being told to take a hike--does not seem to have affected your hope at all.

Then you say the US should "increase oil and gasoline production so as to saturate the market" and "the price of oil and gasoline would then drop through the floor." Umm... have you looked at any of the estimates of the ANWR and other potential US oil reserves? There isn't enough to make the Middle East even notice, much less "saturate the market".

They would change the law so that the supply of oil and gasoline vastly outpaced demand and oil and gas prices dropped.

Ah, yes. "We hereby decreee that the supply of oil shall exceed demand." You obviously have a strong grasp of economics. Oh, and if that does work... then why didn't the Republicans pass that law? Huh? Oh yeah, you answered that... because "they don't care about the American consumers."

And your last paragraph just defies all reason. You lambast the Dems for not doing in the last two years what the Reps also did not do in the previous more-than-two years. So does your tirade apply to Republicans also?

I must say, though, that this post was quite entertaining.

I completely agree with Max... (Below threshold)

I completely agree with Maxine!

We simply cannot allow the Free Market Fairy to control a vital national resource.

I hope you are joking, S... (Below threshold)

I hope you are joking, Steve,

No, I'm not and I don't understand why you think Big Oil should rake in the enormous profits.

"let's blame the Dems for n... (Below threshold)

"let's blame the Dems for not drilling ANWR, when the Reps controlled both houses of Congress for six years and did nothing about it."

Dems get the blame because they have been the main factor blocking the use of our resources. Kim mentioned that some repubs were guilty as well.

"some stupid thing some stupid Congresswoman said that is completely meaningless"

Completely meaningless? Promoting the nationalization of America's oil companies is not an idle threat when the likelihood of Obama (the most liberal dem) having a veto proof majority is a real possibility.

"ANWR and other potential US oil reserves? There isn't enough to make the Middle East even notice, much less "saturate the market".

How would you or anyone else know? No exploration since the 70's. The BBC reported in Nov of 2007 that Brazil had discovered oil reserves off their coast with the potential to catapult them into one of the top ten producers in the world. Since then those reserves have been confirmed. How much might we have?

We have enough coal reserves that with coal-to-liquid technology we can provide for our energy needs for the next 200 yrs. Literally hundreds of environmental restrictions prevent its extraction.

Then there's nuclear technology...

"then why didn't the Republicans pass that law?"

Political capital and higher short term priorities. Without the benefit of hindsight, the decision was made to use what political capital the Admin. had (remember the state of the US after the 2000 election?)to pursue the WoT. Whether you agree or not isn't the issue, the plausibility of that being their reasoning is the relevent issue.

"You lambast the Dems for not doing in the last two years what the Reps also did not do in the previous more-than-two years."

The lambasting is fair because you mis-state the facts. From CNN.com; Nov 2000 headline:
"Slim Republican majority in Congress means little action likely"

You're right about the entertainment factor but it turns out that you're the baffoon.

No, I'm not and I don't ... (Below threshold)
cirby:

No, I'm not and I don't understand why you think Big Oil should rake in the enormous profits.

Define "enormous."

Is it a fixed dollar value?

Or is it (as it should be) a relative one, based on the amount of money they had to spend to get those profits? Oil companies make "enormous profits" because they're well, ENORMOUS. Exxon spends something like a billion dollars a DAY just to maintain their business and pay their employees. On a dollar-to-dollar basis, oil companies just don't make that damned much money.

And are you ready to pick up the slack in so many pension funds? You know, the ones that make those "enormous" profits, and use them to pay all of those retirees their monthly checks? Unions are the biggest investors in the large oil companies - I'm sure they're going to be really pleased to know that the Democrats are ready to take their money for no particular reason.

"No, I'm not and I don't un... (Below threshold)

"No, I'm not and I don't understand why you think Big Oil should rake in the enormous profits." Steve J

He thinks that Big Oil should rake in their profits because it makes sense once you understand.

Because in the long run the law of unintended consequences would result in us being much worse off if we 'take away' their profits.

Might I respectfully suggest some basic research?

Economics 101. Or spending a few hours reading key Wall Street Journal articles.

Or just reading this article for a relatively quick explanation:
Explaining the High Price of Gas.
You may read it by just clicking on my name at the bottom of this post.


The catastrophic stupidity ... (Below threshold)

The catastrophic stupidity of moonbats like Bobo Boxer who deny new drilling in ANWR & then blame the oil companies for her/their stupidity defies comprehension. Then Maxine Waters says she wants to nationalize the oil industry ala Chavez. It's clear to me that the Dems want to take a thriving economy in the circumstances and destroy it to advance their collectivist socialist principles.

Crazy Maxine let the cat out of the bag. Shell's Hoffmeister is an adult venturing into the sandboxes of tantrum-prone airhead ditzes like Bobo Boxer & zany Waters. He told the airhead ditz the truth and she spouts a threat to nationalize.

The Democrats simply don't realize that the USA is still constitutionally a republic and that nationalizing the oil companies would be overruled by SCOTUS, except for Ginzburg & GHWB's insane appointee, Souter, the man who lives alone in the NH woods. For that political crime alone, GHWB demonstrated that he knew nothing and cared nothing for Republican principles and domestic policy in general.

The MSM shows every jot & tittle of the Repub mistakes or misstatements. And watch the ridiculous "Fairness Doctrine" come to the fore to squelch the First Amendment if the Dems win.

Finally, the Socialist Union of Burma is constantly called a "military govt" by the MSM. Haven't once heard anyone mention the glories of Socialism on the march in Burma, as in Zimbabwe, N. Korea, or Cuba.

Dr. Sanity often points out that the modal personality of the left-wing of the Dem Party is psychotic. Or in Maxine's case, a rock babe in her '60s.

Won't these people ever grow up? They think it's wonderful to be dumber than dirt & silly as all outdoors.

I belive your spot on Kim. ... (Below threshold)
1903A3:

I belive your spot on Kim. I also belive that if Congress,today,said that we would drill in ANWR and elsewhere,then the price of oil would drop imediately.Based on speculation of course. :)

Oops, forgot a couple of po... (Below threshold)

Oops, forgot a couple of points. Oil companies are actually not making OBSCENE PROFITS, but are able to keep their head above water by making 8 cents on the dollar.

Compare that with Microsoft at 40 cents on the dollar.

Or Google at 50 cents on the dollar. [my old buddy who wrote The Prize on CNBC].

But facts never make it to the MSM, only silly female emotionalism. The price you pay for electing silly morons.

Like Brian & Steve J.

Fact is, the Repubs had a very slim majority and enuf special interest corruption seduced a few East Coast pansies to go along with the insane lemming left. The Dems are suicidal, though they think they are the wave of the future----actually they're a tsunami of destruction.

And Charles T. Maxwell is almost always right.

Try spending an afternoon in the NyMex pit in NYC & you'll understand crazy people at work---I did and I do.

But Bobo Boxer and Marble-mouth Leahy take the cake---deny ANWR and then blame exactly the wrong people.

Didn't know the stooges on ... (Below threshold)
bill-tb:

Didn't know the stooges on the Judiciary committees were such oil experts, did you? The Democrat Socialists have run everything they wanted in America by using the Congressional Judiciary committees, time everyone woke up to that fact.

Conyers in the House is warming up his trillions in black reparations for Obama to sign.

Price too high, supply too low. Something even a Democrat Socialists can understand. Or am I giving them to much credit here?

Kind of like some trendster... (Below threshold)
DaveD:

Kind of like some trendster who would pay any price for an imported bottle of Evian but would rather die of dehydration than be seen drinking water originating from his own home's faucet.

Damn those oil companies an... (Below threshold)

Damn those oil companies and their obscene profits! Why if we demanded that they make NO profit at all we could SLASH gas prices to...oh...maybe $3.60 a gallon.

Yeah.

That's help.

Exactly, Falze. And this g... (Below threshold)
Oyster:

Exactly, Falze. And this grilling the execs on their salaries. What are they trying to prove here? Nothing. It's all theater to raise emotions.

Dem: "How much did you make last year?"

Exec: "About three million."

Now see, we're supposed to conclude that if this man didn't make three million, why that money could be in the pockets of every American. I'd be $.01 richer! And if we took it from all the execs I could have as much as a couple dollars!

But all this furor and hype... (Below threshold)
JLawson:

But all this furor and hype isn't about actually solving the problem - they need desperately to be seen as doing something to solve it, whether it gets solved or not.

In fact, from their point of view it's almost better if the problem DOESN'T get solved. If it's solved, they can't use it to rail against the oil companies. They can't use it to raise taxes on the oil companies (which doesn't help things, but at least gives an appearanceof doing something) and they can't use it (most importantly) to get re-elected by promising to solve the problem.

Once you realize they've got no intention of actually doing anything that might cause the problem to go away, their inexplicable responses become much more explainable.

"Who is John Galt?"<p... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

"Who is John Galt?"

I really didn't expect the "Endarkenment" to be proceeding at such a rapid pace but it really looks like the wheels are coming off a lot sooner than I had counted on it.

The socialists in congress are about to get their wishes with a veto proof majority and I can say without a doubt that when they enact the legislation they want the people squealling the hardest will be like Steve J & Brian.

www.drillusaoil.com... (Below threshold)
lspivak:

www.drillusaoil.com

Just more proof that govern... (Below threshold)

Just more proof that government is the problem, not the solution.

There's a strong correlatio... (Below threshold)
COgirl:

There's a strong correlation between economic growth and energy consumption. When there is cheap and plentifuly energy, the economy grows. Make energy more expensive (as the dems are doing) and the economy slows, businesses die.

If you want to minimize the impact of oil prices on the economy, you develop US resources, allow refineries to be built, encourage the development of alternative fuels WHILE simultaneously imposing tougher MPG standards. The transportation sector of this country consumes more oil than any other. And that will take a long time to change.

Completely meaningless?<... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Completely meaningless?

A buffoon promoting a stupid idea that will never get a second vote? Yes, completely meaningless. Even Ron Paul had a few on his side, but no one took him seriously.

Like I said, entertaining.

I hope the agreements poste... (Below threshold)
Maggie:

I hope the agreements posted on this
thread about nationalizing
the oil industry was tongue in cheek.
Because any industry nationalized will have to
be guarded by the military. That is a
guarantee. Which means the end to our
freedoms, the little we still have.
And Maxine is an illiterate and ignorant
woman who needs to go back to school, the
first grade.

Might I respectfully sug... (Below threshold)

Might I respectfully suggest some basic research?

Economics 101.

As I recall, oiligopolies are a threat to free markets.

The socialists in congre... (Below threshold)

The socialists in congress are about to get their wishes with a veto proof majority and I can say without a doubt that when they enact the legislation they want the people squealling the hardest will be like Steve J & Brian.

I've seen the damage done by the Free Market Fairy and it's time for a BIG change.

So you want the quick ruin ... (Below threshold)

So you want the quick ruin caused by the Communism Fairy, or the slow decline caused by the Socialism fairy, or the total ruin caused by the "Let's grab everything valuable and have it run by people who don't have the first clue about how to KEEP it running" fairy, that most recently shoved its wand up Mugabe's... nose?

Careful what you wish for, bub. Chances are, once you get it you'll wish you hadn't.

Steve J. you really are tha... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

Steve J. you really are that ignorant then?

Well, that's not surprising news. First of all, your vague, moronic references to the free market are just stupid. It takes a special kind of utter ignorance to advocate socialist economics given the history we have of their complete failures. There is no realistic alternative to the free market in the global economy today. No one with an IQ over room temperature believes that socialized markets can better or more efficiently supply energy needs to the American economy. Examples of the kind of bloated, failed socialized oil business can be found in Mexico's PEMEX - fat corrupt payrolls, decaying infrastructure, political patronage.

Second, it would essentially be impossible for the US government to "nationalize" the oil business. A large fraction of our domestic oil consumption is controlled by foreign companies who could not be nationalized by us - like CITGO - and because of the US Constitution, the American people would have to pay for the oil companies that were confiscated.

Do you have trillions of dollars in your pocket, Steve J? Go add up the market capitalization of American oil companies, because that would be the bill.

I hate to call someone as stupid as Maxine Waters, its just about the worse insult imaginable.

Holy Kelo Case Batman how m... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Holy Kelo Case Batman how much would it cost to nationalize the top 5 oil companies?

Market Capitilzations:
Exxon/Mobil: $479B
BP: $237B
ConocoPhillips:$140B
ChevronTexaco: $208B
ShellOil: $269B

For the United States Government to nationalize the top five oil companies it would cost over $1.3 Trillion.

God this Waters woman is an... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

God this Waters woman is an obamanation. She can't even say the word. Inarticulate bitch.

Steve J: These companies a... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Steve J: These companies are not an "oligarchy" or whatever fairy thing you've got in mind.

Do some research, instead of sloganeering. US oil companies control a very tiny fraction of world oil supply, due to the stupidity of liberal Democrats and a few skittish Republicans in Congress. Your opinions are informed by 0 facts, so get over it, the Soviet Union is dead, and China is now capitalist.

Suck on that lemon, Comrade.

WHOA - I'd like to respond... (Below threshold)
JanhTX:

WHOA - I'd like to respond to Geoffrey Britain's response about lack of religion. I am a "non-believer" and find that highly insulting. I am a non-believe because I don't subscribe to ancient recycled explanations of life. I analyse EVERYTHING before me, and if I detect cause and effect, I learn from it. I am also able to recognize random events. Most of my free thinking buddies are Liberterians, NOT mind numb liberals lusting for nationalization.

Please be a little more careful with your brush strokes!!!!!!

ME: No, I'm not and I do... (Below threshold)

ME: No, I'm not and I don't understand why you think Big Oil should rake in the enormous profits.

Define "enormous."

OK, if you take out the profits of just 3 Big Oil companies, the S&P 500 would show a net loss in profits:
"Take away Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and ConocoPhillips and profits at U.S. companies are the worst in at least a decade.

Without the $70 billion that oil producers earned in the last two quarters, profits at companies in the Standard & Poor's 500 Index tumbled 26 percent and 30.2 percent, the biggest decreases for any quarter since Bloomberg started compiling data in 1998.

Energy companies made up almost half the income growth reported by S&P 500 companies in the first three months of 2008 as oil prices surged past $100 per barrel, the data show." (emphasis added)

http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2008/05/sp500-ex-energy.html

First of all, your vague... (Below threshold)

First of all, your vague, moronic references to the free market are just stupid.

1) 1987 stock market crash
2) SAvings & Loan debacle
3) Long Term Capital Management
4) Internet stock bubble
5) Enron
6) Housing bubble/CDOs

You are still incoherent, S... (Below threshold)
SPQR:

You are still incoherent, Steve J. A vague list? You obviously don't even know what your argument is. Typical actually.

As an exercise, you ought to actually learn something about the your vague list. What is amusing is how many of what you list are failures not of the free market, but failures of government intervention.

Yes, Comrade Commisar, Stev... (Below threshold)
Mitchell:

Yes, Comrade Commisar, Steve. Yes, whatever you say; for the good of the little peo, er, proletariat.

Arriba Los Pobres!.....Daniel Ortega




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